Speech Dispatcher 0.6 & Festival Freebsoft Utils 0.6 released


Brailcom just released the final versions of Speech Dispatcher 0.6 and
Festival Freebsoft Utils 0.6. Please look at the separate announcements
bellow to see what is new.

We did not release the Gnome Speech driver for Speech Dispatcher after
the recent discussions about it's inclusion into Gnome Speech. I'm now
going to submitt it into bugzilla and hopefully it gets into Gnome Speech
distribution soon.

Speech Dispatcher 0.6

The Brailcom organization is happy to announce the availability of
Speech Dispatcher 0.6 developed as a part of the Free(b)Soft project.
Please read `What is new' and `NOTES' bellow.

* What is Speech Dispatcher?

  Speech Dispatcher is a device independent layer for speech
  synthesis, developed with the goal of making the usage of speech
  synthesis easier for application programmers. It takes care of most
  of the tasks necessary to solve in speech enabled applications. What
  is a very high level GUI library to graphics, Speech Dispatcher is
  to speech synthesis.

  The architecture of Speech Dispatcher is based on a proven
  client/server model. The basic means of client communication
  with Speech Dispatcher is through a TCP connection using the Speech
  Synthesis Interface Protocol (SSIP).

  Key Speech Dispatcher features are:

  - Message priority model that allows multiple simultaneous
    connections to Speech Dispatcher from one or more clients
    and tries to provide the user with the most important messages.

  - Different output modules that talk to different synthesizers
    so that the programmer doesn't need to care which particular
    synthesizer is being used. Currently Festival, Flite, Epos and
    (non-free) Dectalk software are supported. Festival is an
    advanced Free Software synthesizer supporting various languages.

  - Client-based configuration allows users to configure different
    settings for different clients that connect to Speech Dispatcher.

  - Simple interface for programs written in C, C++ provided through a
    shared library, Python, Common Lisp and Guile interface. An Elisp
    library is developed as a sperate project speechd-el. Possibly an
    interface to any other language can be developed.

* What is new in 0.6?

 - ALSA and experimental NAS sound output supported (apart from OSS)

 - SSIP implementation now supports events notification and index

 - Improved documentation

 - spd-say client functionality expanded (stopping, client name setting)

 - Better performance

   - ALSA audio output is not turned on by default. If you like,
     go to etc/speech-dispatcher/modules and turn it on for your
     output module.

   - If you are using speechd-up, you likely need to upgrade to
     speechd-up-0.3rc1 due to a bug in speechd-up. Speechd-up 0.3 also
     brings new capabilities, notably support for the ``Read
     all'' function in Speakup.

   - Although not necessary, we highly recommend you to install the new
     version of festival-freebsoft-utils 0.6 available on

   - A Gnome Speech output module was developed which allows you to use
     Gnopernicus with Speech Dispatcher and will shortly be available
     in Gnome Speech distribution.

* Where to get it?

  You can get the distribution tarball of the released version from


  We recommend you to fetch the sound icons Speech Dispatcher can use as
  well. They are available at


  Corresponding Debian packages will soon be available at your
  Debian distribution mirror.

  The home page of the project is http://www.freebsoft.org/speechd

* How to report bugs?

  Please report bugs at <speechd bugs freebsoft org>. For other
  contact please use <speechd lists freebsoft org>
Happy synthesizing!

festival-freebsoft-utils 0.6 released

The Free(b)soft project is pleased to announce
festival-freebsoft-utils 0.6.

* What is festival-freebsoft-utils?

  festival-freebsoft-utils is a collection of Festival utilities that
  enhance Festival with some useful features.  They provide all what is
  needed for interaction with Speech Dispatcher.

  Key festival-freebsoft-utils features are:

  - Generalized concept of input events.  festival-freebsoft-utils
    allows not only plain text synthesis, but also combining it with
    sounds.  Additionally, mechanism of logical events mapped to other
    events is provided.

  - Substitution of events for given words.

  - High-level voice selection mechanism and setting of basic prosodic

  - Spelling mode.

  - Capital letter signalization.

  - Punctuation modes, for explicit reading or not reading punctuation

  - Incremental synthesis of texts and events.

  - Speech Dispatcher support.

  - Rudimentary SSML support.

  - Enhancing the Festival extension language with some functions
    commonly used in Lisp.  Support for wrapping already defined
    Festival functions by your own code.

  - Everything is written in the extension language, no patching of the
    Festival C++ sources is needed.

* What is new in the 0.5 and 0.6 versions?

  - SSML mode implementation was rewritten to improve operation with
    Speech Dispatcher and to provide better and cleaner framework for
    future more complete SSML support.  SSML spelling support was added,
    on the other hand SSML prosody settings remained unimplemented on
    the synthesis level in this version.

  - New utility functions `min' and `max'.

  - Manual licensed under both GFDL and GPL.

  - Bug fixes.

NOTE: If you use festival-freebsoft-utils with Speech Dispatcher, you
must install Speech Dispatcher 0.5 or higher.  There was an incompatible
change in the Speech Dispatcher Festival interface that prevents the new
festival-freebsoft-utils versions to fully cooperate with older Speech
Dispatcher versions.

* Where to get it?
  You can get the distribution tarball of the released version from

http://www.freebsoft.org/pub/projects/festival-freebsoft-utils/festival-freebsoft-utils-0.6.tar.gz .

  The home page of the project is
  http://www.freebsoft.org/festival-freebsoft-utils .

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